Overview

Elected ARSA: 16 March 1960

Miss Jessie Alexandra Dick—better knowntous as Alix Dick—was born on 15th July 1896 in Largs. Herfirst education was in Largs School, thereafter at a private school in Surrey; her professional training which followed was at the Glasgow School of Art, 1915-19.

 

For some years after graduation she organized and taught in children’s classes on Saturdays which were very popular and earned high praise throughout the West of Scotland. Eventually she became a full-time member of the teaching staff of the Glasgow College of Art and was responsible for the first years of the Diploma Course.

 

At a time when students resented discipline of any kind Miss Dick, in her quiet and persuasive way, managed toinstil something of the Renaissance traditional skills in which she thoroughly believed,and many of her students felt grateful to her for the sound early training.

 

Apart from the School of Art, Miss Dick was an ardent member of the Ladies’ Art Club in Glasgow and did much to keep it a float in its hey-day. She was secretary for several years and was, in time, elected President. Besides her interest in art, Miss Dick was a keen church member and was a supporter of the Iona Community from its beginning.

 

Miss Dick was a very private person—we know, apart from her art, that she was the youngest member of a family of ten children;

we know that she and a sister had a house on the Isle of Arran, where she found much pleasure; we know that we elected her as Associate Memberof the Royal Scottish Academy in 1960 and that she was a regular contributor to both the Glasgow Royal Institution of Fine Arts and to our own exhibitions—apart from which, being a very private person, Miss Dick remained her own quiet self. We know little more.

 

She lived with her bed-ridden sister in Clarkston, Glasgow. One night, in the second week of August this year, it appears that Alix roused herself to go to the assistance of her sister and when so doing she collapsed in a coma.

 

It can only be assumed that the invalid then herself managed to get out of bed to assist—and likewise collapsed on the floor, where both were found lying the next day. It is tragic to record that while the sisters initially rallied, neither recovered, Alix herself dying on 16th August without having regained consciousness. We remember her with pleasure as a most agreeable person and were glad to have known her.

RSA Obituary by Hugh Adam Crawford. Transcribed from the 1976 RSA Annual Report